We bought our land 7 years ago and it was fully treed. Completely, fully treed with spruce and poplar. Not little swampy trees and sticks either. We (Gord) also decided that we could clear the land with a ..........chainsaw. So he faithfully started cutting out a driveway and eventually the plot for House #1. He started when Nathan was just a toddler, so I was home with three kids while Gord would work Saturdays or after work. He loved seeing the progress, I was a little less eager. I really had nothing to do with that land but I was excited to see him excited.
Beginning of our driveway. Gord cut it out one year
and the next year went back to fresh growth.
turned into this.....
and finally, into this.
I repeat, by hand, with a chainsaw and 7 year old Taylor. We had a fair amount of firewood from this project, but that's alright. I'm a bit of a fanatic with my wood stove. Gord reminded my that his brothers would most likely have paid to haul in machinery to get it all done in 2 days instead of 2 years. "But think of the work it provides and the character it builds", I think I said.
Fast forward a few years and work started again on the side of the property we wanted to keep. Again, fully treed. It was a little easier this time because I could help. We would spend Saturdays hauling wood or building massive fires to get rid of the debris. There were many Sundays when the hard chairs in Church were not pleasant. Bending over and throwing firewood is hard on a few large muscles. The kids started hauling firewood on sleds when the snow fell and it's amazing how much they helped. After clearing a new driveway, the shop site, and finally the house plot, I can say we are DONE DONE DONE with cutting down trees. Oh I still see the odd one that bugs me, but we are so tired of hauling, splitting, and stacking wood. I have loved working with Gord, but I am glad to be in the final phase of our 7 year project. I am also proud to say that I have had a major hand, in this project. But Gord gets all the credit when it comes to summing up the last 7 years of work. He has had a vision for this land that I never dreamed of and I am getting excited to see it taking shape.
Our current state
When I saw this photo I couldn't believe it was done by hand, and you can't even see the shop or the driveway. A little determination goes a long way. And as long as we don't think about the time and energy we could have saved ourselves by using machinery, we're pretty happy with what has been accomplished. I was once lamenting the fact that our kids don't have enough daily chores, like animals and such. Gord responded "We don't have animals, we have trees". We will have work for years, if we stay that long. There will always be deadfall to clean up, or leaning trees to cut down, and maybe, after years of asking and begging, I will have chickens. And Gord will make sure that the chicken coop is tucked waaaaay back in the trees where he can't see it or smell it :)